on jobs and hiring practices

Tue, 7 Jun 1994 01:56:43 EST

When I was logged in via Ethernet,, I think something got screwed up. so I
don't think my previous message got sent. So, here goes:

while I can sympathize with John O'Brien's plight in not having a job, I
do have trouble with the notion of reverse discrimination. Yes, perhaps in an
ideal world, we could say that all hiring should be color-blind, and should be
based solely on peoples' records, assuming we can truly come up with objective,
unbiased criteria for hiring. All things being equal, color, gender, or
ethnicity should not be factors in hiring, but all things are not equal. For
most of our history, women, people of color, and people with disabilties were
denied opportunities in every sphere, not only in education. To compensate for
the historical denial of opportunities to certain minorities, should we not
seek to create opportunities, and even positions, for members of minority
groups and jump at the chance to hire qualified folks who are members of
underrepresented groups? To give an analogy, isn't that what handicapping in
racing is about/

Oh, and somebody posted--and I agree with that person--that we should hire
members of underrepresented groups as role models. If we, as anthropologists,
see our mission as combatting ethnocentrism and fostering tolerance for other
ways of being, should we not deliberately seek to hire folks generally
perceived as different, and practice what we preach?

In case you haven't figured it out, I'm a strong proponent of affirmative
action. so, I would like to ask John O'Brien publicly what policy alternative
he might offer in lieu of affirmative action. John, how would you go about
ensuring equity in recruitment and hiring?

Marge Steiner